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Department of Physical Therapy

Nupur Hajela, PT, PhD

faculty img

Assistant Professor

Office Location: 
PTIA Room 115

Phone: (559) 278-5109
Fax: (559) 278-3635

Educational Background

Education University
tDPT Physical Therapy/Therapist, Rosalind Franklin University ofMedicine and Science, Planned Completion in 2017
PhD Rehabilitation Science, Emphasis in Neuroscience, University of Minnesota (UMN), Twin Cities, 2010
BPT Physiotherapy, Baba Farid University of Health Science, Punjab, India, 2004



Nupur Hajela, Chaithanya K. Mummidisetty, Andrew C. Smith and Maria Knikou: Corticospinal Reorganization after Locomotor Training in a Person with Motor Incomplete Paraplegia, Biomed Research International, 2013, doi:10.1155/2013/516427.

Maria Knikou, NupurHajela, Chaithanya K Mummidisetty: Corticospinal excitability during walking with absent and partial body weight support, Clinical Neurophysiology 2013; 124:2431-2438.

Knikou M, HajelaN, Mummidisetty CK, Xiao M, Smith AC. Soleus H-reflex phase- dependent modulation is preserved during stepping within a robotic exoskeleton. Clinical Neurophysiology 2011; 122(7):1396-404.

C. G. Kukulka, N.Hajela, E. Olson, A. Peters, K. Podratz and C. Quade. Visual and cutaneous triggering of rapid step initiation Exp Brain Res. 2009; 192(2):167-73

Poster Presentations 

M. Knikou, N.Hajela, A. C. Smith, C. K.Mummidisetty, Z. W.Rymer. Reorganization of Spinal Neural Circuits after Locomotor Training in Human Spinal Cord Injury. CSM Conference, Chicago, USA 2012

Hajela N, Smith AC, Mummidisetty CK, Rymer WZ, Knikou M. Selective spinal plasticity after locomotor training in human spinal cord injury. Society for Neuroscience Conference, Washington DC, USA, 2011

Nupur Hajela, Andrew C. Smith, Chaithanya K. Mummidisetty, W. Zev Rymer, and Maria Knikou. Reorganization of spinal neuronal networks after locomotor training in human spinal cord injury. International Neurorehabilitation Symposium, Zurich, Switzerland, 2011

Mummidisetty CK, HajelaN, Xiao M, Smith AC, Knikou M. On the behavior of human spinal reflex circuits during robotic assisted stepping. APTA Annual Conference, National Harbor, MD, USA, 2011

Hajela N, Knikou M, Mummidisetty CK, Xiao M, Smith AC. Soleus H-reflex Modulation Pattern during Robotic Assisted Stepping, Brain Research Foundation, Neuroscience Day, Chicago IL, 2010

N. Hajela, C. G. Kukulka, E. Olson, A. Peters, K. Podratz and C. Quade. Visual and cutaneous cueing of step initiation, Society for Neuroscience conference, Georgia, Atlanta, 2006

N. Hajela, C. G. Kukulka. Modulation of human cutaneous reflexes during sitting, standing and step initiation, Society for Neuroscience conference, Chicago, IL, 2009

  • Research Excellence Recognition-Post Doctoral Fellow, RIC, Chicago, USA 2012
  • Graduate School Fellowship; University of Minnesota, Minnesota, USA 2007
  • Special Recognition in Rehabilitation Medicine in Undergraduate study, India 2004
  • Educational Grant from Bhavani Charitable trust, Philadelphia, USA, 2001- 2004

  • American Physical Therapy Association (APTA)
  • California Physical Therapy Association
  • Society for Neuroscience, USA
  • Spinal Cord Society, India

  • PhTH 528 Management of Neurological Disorders in Physical Therapy I 
  • PhTH 597 Evidence Based Practice in Physical Therapy
  • PhTH 565S Community Outreach and Wellness

Dr. Nupur Hajela, PT, PhD is a licensed physical therapist and a neuroscientist. Currently, she is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Physical Therapy at California State University, Fresno. In addition, she is the Director of Rehabilitation Technologies and Outcomes Research at Central California Sports Sciences Institute. At Fresno State, she is one of the core clinical neuro faculty teaching courses such as neurological evaluation and management for Stroke and Parkinsons to DPT students. She conducts her translational neuroscience research on gait and balance in neurological patient population such as mild traumatic brain injury, Stroke and Parkinsons Disease at the Gait Balance and Mobility Education and Research Center at Fresno State. She is a licensed physical therapist in the state of California and Washington and is an active clinician. She is passionate about student success and believes that DPT students have great potential to steer the profession in the right direction.

Dr. Hajela received her bachelor’s of physiotherapy degree from Baba Farid University of Medicine and Science, India. She then moved to the United States to pursue her PhD in Rehabilitation Science with emphasis - neuroscience at the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis. She completed two years of post-doctoral fellowship in clinical neurorehabilitation at the Sensory Motor Performance Program at prestigious Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago (new name: Ability lab) affiliated to Northwestern University of Medicine and Science, Chicago, IL, where she incorporated novel brain stimulation technique such as transcranial magnetic stimulation to understand the cortical and spinal mechanisms underlying neuroplastic changes after injury and rehabilitation in neurological patient population.

Dr. Hajela believes in interprofessional approach to treating patients and therefore is interested in internal and external collaboration for teaching, research and service. She is a lifelong learner and is currently pursuing post professional DPT from Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science, IL. She is also a LSVT BIG certified physical therapist to treat people with Parkinsons Disease. Currently, her research focuses on application of neurogaming in people with concussion such as war veterans and athletes. Her research interests are in the area of novel brain stimulation, games, virtual reality for physical and cognitive therapy.

Dr. Hajela is married and enjoys music, learning about different cultures and cuisines, traveling and spending time exploring nature with her husband and son.